Unique Home Decoration Ideas On A Budget

It’s no secret that times are a bit tight financially for a lot of people and so for many of us redecorating our homes is not really a viable option. That doesn’t have to be the case though as there are unique ways to give your home a new lease of life whilst looking after the pennies. So if you are having to tighten your belt a bit but still want to redecorate your home then here are some unique home decoration ideas on a budget.

#1: Get Your Lighting Right

You may be surprised at just how much difference the right lighting can make to your home. It can completely change the atmosphere and ambiance of a room. You can get cheap lights or lamps and reposition them in the room to light up areas that were previously in the shadows or add a lightning fixture to the roof to give the room a new perspective. You don’t even need to buy new lamps as you could instead simply replace the lamp shades and reposition them to give the room a new look for less.

#2: Add Cushions & Throws

If you can’t afford a new sofa then don’t give up hope on redecorating your living room. A sofa can be reinvigorated by the addition of some new cushions or a throw which can give it a whole new colour and style. When compared to the price of a new sofa this is a great way to redesign your living room for minimal expenditure.

#3: A Lick Of Paint Can Do Wonders

Adding a new colour to a room can completely transform it and you don’t have to fork out for wallpaper and hire someone to put it up for you. Instead you can simply buy some paint and rollers and paint it yourself. It’s hard to beat the feeling of creating something yourself and afterwards you’ll have a brand new looking room to enjoy. You can do this for every room and give the entire house a fresh feel.

#4: Mirrors Can Add Illusion

Mirrors are a great tool for adding the illusion of extra space to a room. If you are feeling a little boxed in by your limited space then they can really help. They can also add extra light to a room which illuminates previously unlit corners which once again creates more space.

#5: Use Frames To Add Personality

If your rooms are looking a bit drab and uninspired then adding new picture frames is a great way to add some personality to them. Wall art can be pretty expensive but it doesn’t have to be for you as you can buy or reuse frames and simply change the pictures in them any time you fancy a new look. You can add your own photos or create some art yourself to put in your frames, the choice is yours.

#6: Be Creative With Stencils

Stencils are great for adding your own unique style to walls, doors and even the floor. With stencils you can add high quality designs to almost any surface quickly, easily and best of all cheaply.

There are lots of ways that you can redecorate your home without breaking the bank, you just have to think outside the box.

Featured images:

Julie Watson recently redecorated her home using these budget ideas. She searched for kitchen fitters Northern Ireland wide to get design ideas.

Kitchen Design Mistakes You May be Making

Kitchens are the heart of any home. You will likely spend plenty of time in your kitchen, preparing meals and even eating. During get-togethers you may find your friends and family gravitating towards your kitchen. If you’ve checked out these kitchen tours or have looked at beautiful kitchens in magazines, you may want a gorgeous space for cooking at your house.

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Kitchens, can be tricky, though. There are many design mistakes common in this room:

Not putting practicality first

Your kitchen is the hardest-working room in the house. Of course, you want it to look great – but you also need it to function smoothly. When considering how well your kitchen works or when thinking about how to remodel the space, list the three dishes you make most often and the steps needed for each dish. How easily can you make the dishes in your kitchen now? How easily could you make these dishes in the kitchen remodel you are considering?

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Over-design

If you are daydreaming over home fashion magazines and catalogs of gourmet designs, you may be thinking about cute and trendy appliances, counters, and kitchens. While these can be fun to look at, they are not usually very practical. You want a kitchen that can stand the test of time, and that means erring on the side of classic designs.

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Ignoring the three most important kitchen areas

The three most important area in the kitchen are the sink, the stove area, and the refrigerator. Not only should you make sure that these areas are highly functional, but they should also be easily accessible and close enough together that moving back and forth between these areas is simple. These three areas are so important that they are sometimes called “The Golden Triangle.” To find out more, check out this great BBC article.

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Too little counter space

You need a lot of counter space for food prep, cutting, and preparing meals. This is especially the case if there is more than one person preparing meals and cooking in your kitchen. If your kitchen is too small for lots of counter space, you may want to invest in a fold-away or pull-out butcher block or a kitchen cart that offers storage space underneath and a cutting space on top.

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An island that gets in the way

An island seems like a good idea because it allows you to add storage and food prep areas in the center of a larger kitchen. But it can quickly get in the way if you keep crashing into the island or if people sitting and eating at the island get in the way of you getting to your counter area. One solution is to put a stove and sink area in your island area so that you can get prep work and cooking done right in the middle of your kitchen. Another option is to forego the island and instead use a kitchen cart that can easily be wheeled again.

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Too little storage space

Kitchens can’t have enough storage space. You need a spot to store food, pots, pans, cutlery, and gadgets. If you have a tiny kitchen, you will need to get creative about storage space. Start by making sure that you are using all your space – including the space near the ceiling. Use organization racks and plastic tubs to keep things organized in drawers and cupboards so that you can fit more in. If you have the room, you can also buy a tall pantry cupboard for your kitchen area.

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Bad air circulation and waste solutions

Kitchens can get stinky fast and they can also overheat easily if you cook or bake a lot. Install a vent above your stove so that you can take care of food odors and open your kitchen window often to air out the room. Keep a smaller waste container in the kitchen so that you take out the trash more often and prevent odors. Scented candles in the kitchen and a strict cleaning schedule can also ensure that your kitchen smells great.

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Dim lighting

You need to see what you are doing in order to whip up great meals for you and your friends. Kitchens need more lighting than most rooms. You will want bright overhead lights as well as track and task lighting to light up your counter, stove, and other food prep areas. Under-the-cabinet lights work well in the kitchen and don’t take up much room.

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Cabinets with space on top

It’s a terrible waste of space and just attracts dust (in a spot where you can’t reach easily). Make sure that your cupboards go right up the ceiling or at least don’t have that do-nothing space on top. You can place less-used items in these areas.

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Boring design

Just because your kitchen is hard-working, that doesn’t mean it can’t be gorgeous. If you add cute or trendy items, though, make sure that they are something that you can live with for a while since remodeling a kitchen is usually costly. Or, do the smarter thing and add a little spice with fun and colorful accessories that can be changed up. A fun wine rack, for example, or a new set of bar stools won’t cost much but can add a little fun to the area.

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Too many gourmet appliances

It’s easy to watch cooking shows and get over-enthusiastic about all the appliances and little gadgets that TV chefs have. Just remember that it is TV: it is meant to sell you things and is meant to be glamorous. Your own kitchen doesn’t need those things. Worse, if you fill your home kitchen with lots of appliances and items it will be harder for you to find room for it all.

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Overspending

If you want to make any changes in your kitchen, it’s important to compare prices and to work with a strict budget. This is one renovation where price can get away from you.

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Have you been making any of these mistakes in your kitchen? Now’s the time to re-do, re-think, and re-imagine your space so that you’ll enjoy spending time in this room rather than reaching for take-out menus every night.

Décor Touches to Make Your Home Cozy for Fall

Now that autumn is here, it’s time to create a cozier home for those cooler evenings. During this time of year, many of us spend more time indoors as the weather changes, and this means you may want to make a few changes to make your home comfortable:

Rethink your palette.

One thing to look out for in autumn is a cold house. Bright colors that are cheering in the summer can feel cold in the fall. Great autumnal colors include reds, orange, copper, brass, rich greens, and even smoky grey. You don’t have to re-do your entire color scheme, but consider adding a little color with throws, rugs, candles, and other accessories. A great option is to add color and texture with richly textures blankets, curtains, and rugs. Thick wools, textured or nubby fabrics, cashmere, and leather are great choices for fall.

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Decorate with organic items.

Bring a little of the indoors in. Buy some fall flowers at the farmer’s market or buy some autumnal wreaths. A centerpiece of fall leaves on the mantel also works great. Or, consider orbs. Made from wicker or metal, orbs are inexpensive and can be filled with flowers or can work standalone. For inspiration, check out this article. Organic, natural items bring a little warmth into your home without costing much. They blend nicely with most décor and they can bring some nature in at a time when you are probably spending more time inside. If you’d like more tips on creating your own autumn decorations, check out this handy page.

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Pay attention to indoor air quality.

While not an interior décor item per se, indoor air quality is even more important than the items you use to decorate your home. Now that you are closing your windows more often and will be using your heating system more, you need to make sure that your home is safe and comfortable. This is a great time to get basic maintenance on your HVAC or other heating system. It’ll save you the stress of having something go wrong on the first really cold day. If you haven’t already, this is also a great time to add some plants to your home and to switch to more natural cleaning products so that you can breathe easier.

While you’re at it, check to see whether your home is too damp or too dry. You can buy a hygrometer at your local hardware store to check how your home air is holding up – it will be in the same aisle as room thermometers. If you find problems, a dehumidifier or humidifier can go a long way towards keeping your home cozy – and safe.

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Think spicy.

Candles and diffusers with rich scents of cinnamon, nutmeg, leather, vanilla, and other warm fragrances can really make your home seem welcoming and autumnal. Candles in rich colors and warm scents are an especially great idea at this time of year since they add a soft glow and a great fragrance as days get shorter.

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Add more seating.

Fall often means more entertaining, so consider adding some more seating areas for guests. Padded benches or groupings of chairs in your dining area, living area, and entrance area can create a great welcoming feel. It’s also a practical way to ensure you have room for people who stop by. A bench or cozy chair also looks great – especially if you choose seating that is rich in color and texture. If you can’t afford to go all-out with new chairs or benches, take a second look at your outdoor furniture. If you have wicker patio sets, for example, a few throw pillows and a cozy blanket can transform them into a cozy seat for a foyer or a nook.

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Give extra attention to entrances.

There will be more activity here, so re-focus from your garden to foyers, doors, and walkways. Hang an autumnal wreath on your door and make sure that your walkway is lit up for evening visits. Add some sunflowers or fall leaves to a hallway table. Since days may be getting wetter, invest in an attractive rug or mat in front of your door. Make sure your home says “welcome.”

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Think rustic.

Rustic touches are a great option for autumn. This is the perfect time to show off any decorative items you have that feature a little patina and character. Whether it’s a copper vase or an old trunk, rustic works wonderfully. Go raid your attic for a few ideas.

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A few extra touches are all it takes to help your home transition between the seasons beautifully.

Time to Re-Do Your Bedroom: Ideas for Your Project

If you hate your bedroom and want to create a whole new space, you’ll want to think carefully before you buy anything or invest any money in the project. It’s easy to head to the furniture store and buy a whole new bedroom set. That does not mean you’ll get the bedroom you want. Your project should instead follow these steps:

1) Start dreaming your way to a new bedroom

Before you spend another penny on the room, consider what you want – and what you have to work with. You will also want to look at lots and lots of photos of bedrooms and even create a file of your favorite looks. HGTV has a number of inspirational ideas for bedrooms here. You may also want to take pen and paper to answer questions such as:

  • What will I be using my room for (besides sleep)?
  • What did I first notice and like about my bedroom?
  • What do I not like about my bedroom?
  • What things in my room do I already have that I can use to create a different look?
  • How much space do I have for what I want?
  • Do I need to consider any specific needs (i.e. pets or children)?
  • Who else will be using the room, and what are their tastes like?
  • Am I drawn to modern rooms, traditional rooms, or another style entirely?
  • Which colors make me feel most at home?
  • What kind of sleep am I getting in my bedroom now?
  • What is my morning and evening routine like and what can I do to my bedroom to make these routines easier or more pleasant?
  • What bedroom have I liked sleeping in best? What did I like about the room?
  • What feelings do I want to evoke in this room?
  • If I could only change three things about this room, what would they be?
  • How often do I want to change my bedroom up?
  • Are there health concerns in my bedroom I need to address when decorating or making changes?
  • What would my bedroom look like if money, time, and practicality were not an issue?

These questions will get you thinking about what you want – and don’t want – in your new bedroom. They may also help you realize things that could affect your décor choices. For example, if you’re going to want to re-do your room often, you may want to buy less expensive furniture so that you can change it without feeling bad about the budget.

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2) Plan well

To avoid disaster, plan on paper or online before you make any changes. Carefully measure your bedroom and any furniture you think you might keep. Then, consider different colors, styles, and ideas for your room. You can use online tools to get a sense of how the space would look like with specific changes, which is very useful when comparing styles and choices. You can see a list of online planning tools here.

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3) Create a budget

Renovating or making over a bedroom can be costly, especially if you want to make changes to your furniture and the structure of the room. Create a budget for your project. If you need help, there are online calculators here, here, and here.

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4) Focus on what you can keep and work with

If your bedroom has good basics, you may find your job is much easier than you thought. Maybe you have a large closet, a decent solid wood bed, and attractive windows. Find ways to highlight what you love. For example, beautiful ceilings can be showed off with a light fixture. Rather than replacing everything, find ways to salvage what you own. If you have a nice dresser that is in bad shape, for example, you may want to repaint it and add new drawer pulls to create a whole new look. Don’t just reinvent the wheel – think about what already works and what can be make better with a little paint and imagination.

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5) Then, work on changing what you don’t love

Of course, some things will have to go – like the mattress that gives you a terrible sleep or the broken nightstand. This is where your budget comes in. Just be sure to use the money wisely – hunt around for quality items that you adore rather than settling on something that is just available.

6) Give yourself permission to have temporary items and in-between stages

Unless you hire a professional, you will likely have ugly-duckling stages where your bedroom looks less than ideal. Maybe you’ll have trouble getting the paint right or will have to wait a few months to be able to afford a beautiful dresser. That’s OK. If you can’t afford gorgeous bed linens at first, for example, buy cheap bed-in-a-bag sheets and keep saving until you can afford the items you want.

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7) Start with the basics

There’s no point in buying the extras for your room until you have the bare bones, which include:

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  • Paint
  • Bed
  • Clothes storage
  • Night stand
  • Flooring
  • Window treatments and privacy

Once you have these in place, you can start thinking about accessories and additional items. You can add a pile of pillows to the bed, for example, plants, and art for the walls. You may also want to add a vanity area or a cozy spot for reading or relaxing.

8) Give yourself a chance to rely on serendipity

You may find the perfect canopy bed at an antique market one Saturday when you are more worried about your latest work project rather than the state of your home. Or, you may find the perfect armoire at a flea market one year from now. The point is, don’t focus on getting things perfect in your bedroom. Give your room permission to change and grow by seeing the makeover process as a journey rather than a perfect room that looks as though it belongs in a magazine.

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Don’t make design mistakes because you rush too fast into your bedroom makeover. If you’re handling the re-do yourself rather than hiring a pro, take the time to carefully consider and plan the project so that you get your dream bedroom with fewer mistakes and hassles.

Dramatic Wall Art to Invigorate Your Home

Sometimes, simple posters or small framed art just don’t cut it. In many rooms (especially bedrooms and living rooms) bold art on the walls can create an important focal point for the room and can create a theme for the entire space. And, let’s face it: a big, bold beautifully decorated wall often adds that touch of amazing that you’ve been looking for. There are a few basic ideas for making it happen:

Bring the Indoors in

A large tree (painted or even made with real wood or papier-mâché) creates a dramatic look and is terrific for a living room where you want to create a natural look or for bedrooms where you want to create a fairy-tale feel. You can even hang decorations, bird cages, or strings of lights in the branches and leaves. If you want a green home, you can use trees that have already been cut down. For some great ideas on incorporating trees into your home décor, check out this blog site. If you prefer to go with paint, this Apartment Therapy blog post shows you how to create a dramatic tree mural.

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Trees aren’t the only things you can bring indoors from nature. A dramatic vertical garden can also create a stunning focal point in a dining room, kitchen, or living room. It is a very eco-friendly option and can also help you improve indoor air quality. To find out how you can start your own wall garden, you can check out this site.

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Water, Water Everywhere

Waterfalls and fountains are another great choice for living rooms and dining rooms. These walls not only look amazing, but they can help combat stress and dry air. In many cases, homeowners also find the sounds of water soothing and very pleasant. Check out this Freshouse blog post to see how waterfalls and fountains can fit in with any décor. Full-size aquariums are also a great option — as long as you are willing to put in the work.

Cover your Walls with Stone, Brick, or Wood

If you want a Western, rustic, or masculine look for studies or living rooms, this is your best bet. These types of walls are a bit more of an investment, because of the materials involved, but the final look will last for a long time. If you are lucky enough to live in an older home, simply exposing existing brick or wood can be enough. One caveat, though: keep in mind that all-wood or all-brick walls can make your room look tinier. If you have a smaller space, consider having one wall of brick or wood and keeping the rest of your walls a lighter color to create the illusion of light.

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Add a Huge Fireplace

Instead of just adding a stone wall, you can create a dramatic fireplace that goes from floor to ceiling. Not only does this look amazing, but if you live in a cold climate, it can make your home cozier. Just make sure you check with local building codes and with your insurance company before you decide on this home improvement; to the fire hazard fireplaces can change your insurance policy and there may be some strict rules in your area about installing new fireplaces or wood-burning stoves.

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Put Your Bed up High

A loft bed or tree house bed is a great idea, especially for children’s rooms. Not only is having a tree house inside lots of fun for kids, but it can look amazing and it saves a ton of floor space in small rooms. If you decide to go this route, though, you need to make sure that the structure is safe. There are kits available for parents who want to build this type of whimsical room within a room, and some the treehouses that you can create this way are truly spectacular. Check out this Inhabitat blog post for ideas.

Books

If you are a reader, putting in floor-to-ceiling bookshelves is a practical storage solution. It can also look amazing. Don’t just limit yourself to book shelves, though. Huge stacks of books against a book wall can look amazing, too (just make sure they are not in danger of toppling over). If you have books you no longer need or no longer use, you can even use them to create your own wall art. For example, check out the book headboard below. You can read this blog post here to get some more ideas about decorating with books.

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Floor-to-Ceiling Murals or Art

Having an entire wall that is awash with color and texture can create a really dramatic look, especially in open-concept homes that have a modern feel to them. This can be a great way to ensure that your home stays personal and not too clinical if you have a lot of simple lines in your space.

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It’s time to get dramatic about your space. Big, bold art on your walls can really make a big difference — just be sure to keep things simple by sticking with one dramatic piece per room to keep things from getting overwhelming.